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6 Outrageous Animals People Keep as Pets

6. Alligators

Uncuddly, potentially dangerous, live insect eaters aren’t the first descriptors that come to mind when most people describe their ideal pet. After all, the majority of us probably don’t want an animal that you’re obligated to tell anyone within one mile of your home about. Alligators also require special lighting, tanks, food and temperature. That, on top of the fact that they are illegal in most places, makes the alligator a particularly ridiculous animal to keep as a pet.

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Read more: Less Common Pets, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Pets,

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Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives in Oakland, California.


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7:12PM PST on Mar 2, 2014

Thank you

5:52PM PST on Jan 26, 2014

"But don’t find your own just yet. They’re still wild animals, and they still deserve a life outside and out of a cage."

What a stupid, stupid, article. So does that mean 'domesticated' animals 'deserve' to live in a cage? Wild or not, all they need is proper care. Enough with the religious, dogmatic nonsense of all non-domesticated animals 'deserving' to live free.

9:01AM PST on Dec 8, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

8:58AM PST on Dec 8, 2013

Ok, pet skunks are super tame and comparable to cats. People who keep them don't just pick one up off the street, they get one from a breeder. They even have different coat colors, just like cats and dogs. They're not for everyone, but skunks aren't a terrible pet.

Sloths are difficult. I volunteer at a zoo and we have a sloth there named Sid. He requires a very specific cage and diet, and also only pees once every couple of months so when he does its TERRIBLE! They're also pretty hard to come by.

Big cats make bad pets for most people, but some people do care about them and can keep them properly. This is why there should be regulation on big cats so that some idiot can't just go and buy one. Also, Big Cat Rescue is a bad organisation. Most of the animals they have were either bought or bred by Baskin, but she makes up false back stories to get money. ASA and AZA won't accredit her because she doesn't meet their standards. Do some research, it's bad.

Lastly, any animal that require a large water habitat is just really hard to care for. Hippos are huge and super rare, capybaras aren't too common, but alligators are kept. If the owner can provide a big enough cage, then capys and alligators can make good pets. Again, there should be regulation, but they're happy in captivity if cared for correctly.

8:23PM PDT on Sep 14, 2013

Thanks for the post. Cute pix.

8:28PM PDT on Apr 21, 2013

they are salvage, they are not a pet...
GO shelter and save some dog's or cat's... you will spend less money and you be save.

10:14AM PDT on Mar 25, 2013

Totally agree..... Having these type of pets should be illegal everywhere.

4:40AM PDT on Mar 14, 2013

None of these animals should be kept as pets.Thanks for sharing

12:25PM PST on Feb 6, 2013

these people should perhaps become zoologists or reservationsists

7:31AM PST on Jan 16, 2013

i remember watching a programme that included someone with a sloth as a pet. there's a programme that's just finished the series about people who have animals that are in dubious conditions, think was called 'extreme pet rescue' and a lot of those were ex zoos or people with private collections. most of these on the list as already said, are wild animals, so why have them? what makes you think you have the skills to look after such an animal, in terms of feeding, behaviour, sleeping, living conditions and reproduction? what happens if they get ill? who do you take the animal to see? as for having a hippo, or bison or other such large animals, you're fooled into thinking they're not dangerous or they wouldn't harm you if you reared them up from babies. but unfortunately you're wrong and likely to end up dead, as was the case. as for the alligators, again, you need to have specialist knowledge and possibly a permit, as well as an appropriate place to keep them. this is the problem with people and fads. in today's society it's all about what we want and the belief that if we want, we can get; and if not, well, money talks. fools

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